Jammed Shutter on a Leica M3 DS.

Discussion in 'Rangefinder Forum' started by Uncle Bill, Oct 8, 2011.

  1. Uncle Bill

    Uncle Bill Subscriber

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    I was exercising the shutter on my Leica M3 DS this morning and she jammed. It was overhauled by Jerry Smith at Kindermann over a year ago to the mechanicals are in decent shape.

    The big question, is this a big fix? More importantly, an expensive one?

    Bill
     
  2. CGW

    CGW Member

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    Tough break. You might try this guy if you're not liking Kindermann:

    http://harrysproshop.com/Yau/yau.html
     
  3. Uncle Bill

    Uncle Bill Subscriber

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    I have no gripes with Kindermann, other I live in Oakville and it's up in Markham. I rather have Mr. Smith (no relation alas) work on it.
     
  4. CGW

    CGW Member

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    Your call. Yau might be cheaper/faster than Kindermann. He's no slouch.
     
  5. Uncle Bill

    Uncle Bill Subscriber

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    Yau is pretty much the same distance for me. Besides Jerry worked on my Rolleiflex and a bunch of my brother's Leicas so there's some goodwill built up.
     
  6. CGW

    CGW Member

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    No worries. Hopefully it wasn't something he overlooked. Here's hoping for a cheap/minor fix.
     
  7. John Koehrer

    John Koehrer Subscriber

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    For giggles, take a close look at the film aperture. Both from front and back. They have a velvet light trap that the glue dries out on and will cause a jam.
    If you can see the velvet it can be removed, Carefully! but the camera will likely fog film.
     
  8. Ronald Moravec

    Ronald Moravec Member

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    Film chips can get in the shutter tracks. Never try to get extra frames.

    DS mechanisms can go as they are getting old. Ribbons may pull off the shutter. None of this is predictable so do not blame Kinderman.
     
  9. sangetsu

    sangetsu Member

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    Another common problem is that the shutter curtain pulls out of the lathe. If the shutter is stuck open, this might be the cause.
     
  10. buzzardkid

    buzzardkid Member

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    Likely the cause: the M3 DS has an intermediate gear that is held down by a bent washer. The washer makes the first stroke 'stick' before the second stroke can be set in. The gear jams when the first stroke is complete, is released again for further progress when the second stroke is set in.

    The gear is brass and I have seen three M3 DS's that had a tooth (or teeth) broken off the gear because on the end of the first stroke it jams on the teeth. The gear has to take too much stress if the first strokes are forceful and over time a tooth can break off.

    Don Goldberg has the correct gear, but getting it in just right requires either a skilled tech or lotsa time. I never got it right on my first try, spent four hours figuring out correct assembly on my second... I heard from a fellow M3 DS owner that KEH's technical department eventually sent his M3 DS to Sherry Krauter at Golden Touch. A tech has to line up both connecting gears just correct before putting in the intermediate gear, or it will never work correctly...

    OP is some time ago but I still hope this will help somebody someday!

    Cheers,
    Johan
     
  11. georg16nik

    georg16nik Member

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    Johan is spot on for the M3 DS gears.
    From all the Leicas, I or IIIc are the easiest to maintain and made simple but elegant (especially true for Leica I)...
    As said by Antoine de Saint Exupéry
    The M's are easier to put out of alignment in most regards and pricey to repair.
    The good thing is that parts made for the newer models like M6, MP could be used in the old M's but still a RF replacement by Leitz in Solms might go for close to 500EUR.